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“very comfortable B/B in peaceful settting”

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Mas de la Rabassiere
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in St Chamas
Manly NSW
Level 6 Contributor
140 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
“very comfortable B/B in peaceful settting”
Reviewed October 11, 2011

I was surprised to read a few negative reviews and can only suggest some people are not suited to the more homely B/B arrangements and would be more comfortable in a hotel.where you are more likely to be pandered. We had a charming 4 days staying with Michael in his home in the olive grove. We had a down stairs room with french doors leading out to the patio and garden. Our bed was large as was the en suite. While not flash it was comfortable. The surrounding and Michael made for a very relaxing and peaceful stay. We had been travelling for 7 weeks so opted to take advantage of Michael for a 50e dinner with wine. we felt that was reasonable in view of the 4 to 5 courses served with plentiful wine. This allowed us to be out and about to nearby towns such as Arles, and Marseilles and then relax at night listening to Michael's good selection of music. Michael also invited us to join him at a concert in a 12 Century Abby. In all we enjoyed his home, his cooking, his company. Give us a relaxed, comfortable B/B any day over the impersonal hotel. We have returned to Australia with plans to include a stop at St. Chamas on our next European trip. Do get good instructions before you go as it was not easy to find and instructions in the village were on the hit and miss side. We wasted a bit of time finding the property.

Room Tip: downstairs to avoid lugging suitcases. go for an ensuite.
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
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2 Thank SusanManlyNSW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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43 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Date | Rating
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  • English first
  • French first
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English first
Aberdeen, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed September 23, 2011

Our host gave us a very warm welcome, provided a fund of fun and information and went out of his way to be helpful and make our stay a pleasant and relaxing one. Rabassiere is a lovely house with lovely grounds with a superb view but quite difficult to find as it is on a remote road well out of the village (the GPS co-ordinates provided in the directions are spot-on however, if you have sat. nav.). It is a great centre to visit the many historic towns nearby or the Camargue, and very convenient for Marseille airport. The info pack is very detailed, accurate and helpful in deciding on where to visit and Michael Frost was always on hand to help and provide detail if necessary. Don't expect immaculate decor or flunky hand & foot service, but the bedroom and ensuite bathroom were spacious, comfortable and clean and the facilities all worked well. The food was a bit like the house, wholesome rather than flash, but pre-dinners on the lawn and eating out on the terrace as the moon was rising was a joy and much more relaxing than having to navigate from the villages in the dark. What we enjoyed most was the outdoor country house environment, so if you like sharing your company with others you will find as we did that it was a most entertaining and fun experience. Value for money is questionable but how does one evaluate a unique experience?

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank AllyBee43
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cheltenham, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed September 12, 2011

We stayed here for 3 nights and had great expectations based on the Sawday write-up. Our host could not have been more helpful, supportive (after a problem with our car) and engaging and we greatly enjoyed his company and conversation. However, although our rooms were spacious and clean, the bathrooms were very tired with flaking paint on ceilings and walls and the swimming pool was unusable with a thick coat of green algae on the bottom and sides etc. This despite the attentions of a small pool cleaning device, which was clearly over-faced by the task in hand.

The food was no more than adequate, and at 50€ a head, dinner was very much more expensive than the excellent Provincal meals available locally, or that we experience the night before our arrival at less than half the price (also including wine); moreover, a Nicoise salad, for lunch, at 30€ a head was somewhat breathtaking, despite the availability of some local Rose wine and cheese, some of which was mouldy!

The proximity of Marseille airport does not go un-noticed and conversation at our al fresco breakfasts was frequently disturbed by aircraft preparing to land.

Finally, being asked to pay by cash, or by sterling transfer to the host's UK bank, took us by surprise and resulted in us having to resort to the later method due to ATM withdrawal restrictions on our French bank account.

It is sad to say that this B&B was disappointing, despite its attractive location and ambiance.

Room Tip: First floor rooms for the best views!
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
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3 Thank Trevor N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rabassiere, Owner at Mas de la Rabassiere, responded to this review, September 29, 2011
Though not all totally baseless, the criticisms regarding paint, the pool, aircraft noise and mould on the cheese seem to me to be exaggerated and none of these were mentioned during the stay. To understand why, the context is important. The guests had booked in for four nights but on the day after their arrival the driver cracked the sump of their car by going over a concrete barrier in a car park. They crawled home and at least one member of the party was in a very bad temper; when I asked how the day had been, the reply was "awful". The following day was wasted dealing with the car. This may well have affected their enjoyment all the aspects of their stay including the four points mentioned above. I offered to lend them a car but after a long debate the following day (a Friday) they decided to go home in a hire car leaving their's to be repaired locally. They offered to pay for the fourth night they had booked which was cancelled at the last minute. I clarified our policy of only asking for such payments if we had turned someone away, which was not the case here. Nevertheless for all of us, a disappointing visit.
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London
Level 6 Contributor
137 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
Reviewed August 26, 2011

This is a very expensive B&B. We stayed in a small double room, very 1960's, which felt as if someone had just moved out for us! The bathroom wasn't en suite, but was across a corridor, and again, detritus of someone else was in the bathroom. Also, it very much needing an update of bathroom fittings.

We were offered a meal, cooked by the B&B owner, a self taught cook, for £45 each! It sounded such a simple supper that we thought that we could do better elsewhere. And of course, we found a delicious meal in the local bistro.

A delicious breakfast, French style, but certainly not worth 140 euros a night.

Room Tip: I don't know if there IS a good room!
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  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank maggie9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rabassiere, Owner at Mas de la Rabassiere, responded to this review, September 29, 2011
This review seems strange for two reasons. Firstly it concerns a visit that is said to have taken place a year ago; this makes it difficult to remember any incident that might have taken place or indeed to confirm the stay. However I am sure that at the time there was no complaint about the "detritus of someone else" in the bath room. Secondly the remarks about the quality and value for money of dinner refer to a meal that the visitor states she did not eat as she "went to a local bistro"; they seem to be based on her (erroneous) assumption that it was prepared by a self taught cook. The complaint that the bathroom is on the other side of a corridor could however be justified as two of our rooms are like this. When remodelling the house I prefered this arrangement as it allows all bath rooms to have large windows for ventilation. Is it suggested that the existence of this corridor, which only leads to one other en suite room, was reponsible for them sleeping badly; or was this due to indigestion from a cheap bistro meal?

I take this affair very seriously and would be most grateful if Maggie 9 could contact me
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Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed July 29, 2011

I have been lax in providing a review of Michael's small slice of paradise in Provence. We stumbled upon the 'Mas' a few years ago, and have returned on multiple occasions, often hauling friends along with us. Our arrival always feels - and is - like being welcomed by a longtime friend, with open arms (and a glass of rose)! Michael is perhaps best described as a true Renaissance man, as overused as the phrase may be. He is incredibly well-read, well-traveled, truly curious, an excellent coversationalist and an outstanding chef; while Thevi quietly and efficiently keeps the Mas in order for guests. We have tremendous memories of relaxing on the terrace in summer or around the fireplace in winter, or gathered about the dining table, and have often met interesting guests from around the world. Michael also is a fountain of knowledge and suggestions for activities, sights, and so forth in the area. If you are fortunate enough to visit any of these places with him, you'll gain insight well beyond any guidebook. The Mas itself is spacious and comfortable, with plenty of quiet spots indoors and out for simply relaxing, if that is your preference. We have also stayed, along with colleagues, while working in nearby Istres or Marseilles, and it has become an 'office favourite', despite being half a world away. Highly recommended - without fail, we depart very wistfully, and look forward to our next return.

Room Tip: All are equally good.
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  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
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1 Thank 0905
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oxford, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
34 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed July 19, 2011

We arrived earlier than expected, but the host very kindly invited us to have lunch with him. He rustled up a delicious salad nicoise whilst we sat in the kitchen and chatted with him over a glass of rose - as if we had known each other for years. We had the lunch on the shady wisteria-clad terrace with fabulous views over the lake.
Our room was delightful, and air conditioned! The bathroom was similarly lovely. The whole house ouzed with charm. There some beautiful pieces of furniture scattered around and fresh flowers in our room. The accommodation was spotless, and incredibly quiet, and the bed was very comfortable.
Michael is an extremely accommodating, genial informal , and informed host, ably assisted by his delightful housekeeper, Thevi.

Room Tip: They are all lovely
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank magnus65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Burnham, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
78 reviews
45 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
Reviewed June 16, 2011

We arrived drenched having cycled in the rain. We had a lovely hot bath and the use of the drier. As cyclists we could not wish for more.. Welcome was very warm and informal. Free flowing wine and great company. Just what a Chambre d'Hote should. Only mark down for us was that cost of the meal was higher than anywhere else we stayed in a ten day trip.

Room Tip: Fascinating company
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  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank SueSpencerKnight
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rabassiere, Propriétaire at Mas de la Rabassiere, responded to this review, July 11, 2011
We offer gourmet four course dinners based on Provençal recipes and always eat with our guests: a very special moment for us, and we hope for them. The price including aperitif, wine , coffee etc is 50 euros; this is in line with the rather modest restaurants in surrounding villages. However we are always happy to recommend somewhere cheaper for those who prefer to eat - and drink - light.
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Additional Information about Mas de la Rabassiere

Property: Mas de la Rabassiere
Address: 2137 Chemin de la Rabassiere, 13250 St Chamas, France
Location: France > Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur > Bouches-du-Rhone > St Chamas
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in St Chamas
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
La Rabassière is a comfortable family home set in open counryside with magnificent views. All the main tourist attractions in Provence are within an hours drive. The three acres of South facing terraced gardens are mostly given over to 300 olive trees, but there is a tennis court, 12x6m pool, croquet lawn and boules. We enjoy cooking, conversation, music - grand piano in tune in the drawing room, reading - about 500 books in my library and walking: often in the woods and vines behind the house. ... more   less 
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